Choosing a major can be a stressful time for any student. You may have a specific subject in mind but you always have that difficult task of narrowing it down to specific study. Many times it comes down to whether or not you want to discover more about humans or the earth itself. Students just have to find where their strengths are and where their passions lie. What were you most successful with in high school? What did you actually enjoy doing while in class? I picked two subjects to go over, marine biology and geology to give you an idea of what such vastly different sciences entail and how to choose between the two.
Geology is the study of the earth and how it is made. Geologists combine their knowledge of the earth’s processes, materials, and history to see how these three factors could impact the future. They study volcanoes, floods, and other processes and study them well enough to know where the least amount of damage could occur. They also study matters such as climate change and its history.
Geologists are needed in a variety of different areas. You can work for private organizations to make sure they comply with federal, state, and local regulations. Some can even work for the government to study the reaction between natural resources and humans. A lot of geologists become educators to help mold the minds of future geologists. There are several different highly rated colleges and universities that offer Geology as a four year degree. Here is a list of some of top geology schools in the United States: University of Arizona, Penn State University, Stanford University, and the California Institute of Technology.
A marine biologist studies marine organisms and how they behave and interact with the environment. This is a very broad field to get into so most marine biologists tend to pick a specific area that they are interested in. This is such an important job because at some point into the future we may have to look to the ocean for more of our resources. So, the more we know about the ocean, the better chances it will protect us in the future. This requires an extensive amount of coursework and a lot of hands-on learning and training.
There are several colleges and universities that offer marine biology as a major and have excellent programs. Harvard University provides both a Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree program that will set you back about $45,000 a year. The University of Miami offers a Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD in the subject with a cost of about $42,000 a year for tuition. The University of California Santa Barbara offers a Bachelor’s and Master’s program for about $12,000 a year for residents. They also have a doctorate program for marine biology as well. All of these colleges are excellent choices but there are multiple options out there for you so make sure you do your research.